If you love hiking, finding new nature trails to explore is probably a top priority. After all, as lovely as some of your pre-established routes may be, you need to mix them up now and again to ensure they don’t become stale, right? Thankfully, it’s not difficult to do that when there are so many national park trails out there just itching to get on your bucket list.
North Cascades National Park, Washington
Don’t want to walk a trail that hundreds or even thousands of people are on too? If so, North Cascades is the place to be. This national park doesn’t see a great deal of attention from tourists, so you can easily walk the 7.4-mile Cascade Pass Trail without passing many others along the way. With some incredible sights to see, such as glaciers and nearby mountain peaks, this is definitely a worthwhile day out. Just be prepared for a drive if you live in Seattle because it’s three hours away.
Big Bend National Park, Texas
Anyone after a quick but worthwhile hike need look no further than Texas’ Big Bend National Park. With a distance of just 0.5 miles, you won’t lose an entire day walking the Hot spring Trail. However, with the area’s hot springs making for some phenomenal sights, that doesn’t matter. You can easily spend a good hour or two just taking in the beauty and relaxing in the warm water. Plus, the national park has plenty of other notable trails for those seeking greater adventure too. That includes one that’s 12-14.5 miles long and offers a stunning view of the desert valley from over 2,000 feet in the air.
Congaree National Park, South Carolina
Not all hiking trails are suitable for everyone. The 2.6-mile Boardwalk Loop Trail in Congaree National Park, though, is relatively friendly for those in strollers or wheelchairs. This makes it one of the less taxing routes around, though what it lacks in difficulty it makes up for in beauty. This region’s sole national park offers a forest plucked right from a fantasy story, filled with more flora and fauna than you can imagine. If you’re an avid bird watcher, you definitely won’t be disappointed on this trail.
Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
Up for a challenge? If you live on the East Coast, one of the toughest trails you can hike is Old Rag in Shenandoah National Park. With incredible views of Shenandoah Valley and the Blue Ridge Mountains, this route definitely isn’t short of sightseeing opportunities. Just make sure that if you travel this 5.4-mile trail, you bring comfortable, appropriate clothing and a fully-charged cell phone. There’s a lot of scrambling involved along Old Rag, so you need to come here prepared.
Every national park has something special to offer its visitors. These trails are some of the ones that stand out the most, though, thanks to their incredible views and varying degrees of challenge. If you’re ever bored one day or simply wish to go exploring, these routes won’t let you down.